2012 is set to be one of the best years for new release movies in years. An amazing list of movies covering all genres will flow through to the big screens over the coming 12 months. Superheroes and villains abound along with great comedies, action thrillers and some wonderful children’s movies. If you can’t find a reason to visit the cinema this year, you most likely never will.
Cinema releases for February include the 3D release of “Star Wars Episode 1: The Phantom Menace”. The story of a sex addicted yuppie, “Shame” will be released the same day. “My week with Marilyn” follows soon after with Michelle Williams playing the lead role of blonde bombshell Monroe. Tom Hanks and Sandra Bullock team up in “Extremely loud and incredibly close”, the story of a boy mourning the loss of his father following the World Trade Centre attacks of 9/11.
“Killer Elite” will finally have its day in Australian cinemas after releases late in 2011 in other parts of the world. Robert De Niro and Jason Statham star with Clive Owen in this action thriller filmed (in part) in Melbourne. Owen plays an SAS operative hot on the tale of assassins De Niro and Statham.
March brings us “Hansel and Gretel: Witch Hunters”. Jeremy Renner and Gemma Arteton play adult version bounty hunters of the fairy tale characters. Nicholas Cage returns in the second installment of “Ghostrider: Spirit of Vengeance”. This time he has to stop the Devil from taking human form in a race against time through Eastern Europe.
For the ladies, Johnny Depp features in “The Rum Diary”. Depp plays an alcoholic correspondent based in Peurto Rico. In yet another installment, “American Pie: Reunion” is out in March also. It comes some 13 years after the release of the original. Teens are randomly chosen to battle to death in an arena to maintain population levels in fantasy thriller “The Hunger Games”, starring Jennifer Lawrence (Winter’s Bone). Lenny Kravitz also features.
Sam Worthington returns to the screen as Perseus in “Clash of the Titans” sequel, “Wrath of the Titans”. Set 10 years on from the first adventure this installment stars Rosamund Pike as a new version of Andromeda.
3D re-releases seem to be the order of the day with “Titanic 3D” launching in early April. The long-awaited Farrelly brothers take on “The Three Stooges” airs soon after with Moe, Larry and Curly signed up for a reality TV show. What has been labeled Transformers at sea, “Battleship” with Liam Neeson at the helm in an Alien vs Navy action blockbuster. Romantic comedy stalwart Jennifer Anniston teams up with Paul Rudd for “Wanderlust”, released on ANZAC day in Australia.
May kicks off with a bang as Sylvester Stalone and Jason Momoa play a cop and hitman who join forces in “Bullet to the Head”. Tim Burton, Johnny Depp and Helen Bonham Carter reunite in a quirky adaption of 60’s TV show “Dark Shadows”. Newly crowned romantic comedy pageboy Jason Segel delivers more funny moments in “The Five year Engagement”.
The much-anticipated 3rd edition of “Men in Black” sees Will Smith back as Agent J, travelling back in time to team up with a younger version of Agent K (played by Josh Brolin). Final release for May is “Rock of Ages” which delivers Tom Cruise to us as an 80’s glam-rock idle. Also starring Russell Brand, Catherine Zeta-Jones and Alec Baldwin. This one has to be worth a viewing.
June sees Ridley Scott return to the sci-fi genre with “Prometheus”. The Prometheus crew respond to a cryptic inter-galactic message that leads them to a planet where they are exposed to a new alien race. Stars include Charlize Theron, Michael Fassbender and dragon tattoo girl Noomi Rapace. “The Dictator” also launches in early June seeing Sasha Baron Cohen return to a comedy role. Cohen portrays a heroic dictator who challenges the evil forces of democracy.
In “Jack the Giant Killer” Nicholaus Hoult sets off on a fantasy adventure into a hidden land of giants to rescue a princess. Adding to the June laugh fest is Adam Sandler flick “I Hate You, Dad”. The latest Pixar offering is “Brave”, a Scottish themed girl power movie with voice contributions from Kevin McKidd and Kelly Macdonald.
Novelist Seth Graeme-Smiths blood sucking contribution to American history “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter” is out in June also. The ever popular “Ice Age” franchise continues with part 4, “Ice Age: Continental Drift”. Fairy tale epic “Snow White and the Huntsman” sees Charize Theron rack up another winner as the evil queen who consumes young women to maintain her own youthful beauty.
Batman makes a return to the big screen in July with “The Dark Knight Rises”, the third (and supposedly final) installment from director Christopher Nolan. There has been much hype already about this movie and from the initial clip releases they appear justified. Batman (Christian Bale) faces a new nemesis in the form of Bane (Tom Hardy). Bruce Wayne and Gotham City itself are targeted for complete annihilation. Can the dark night save the day?
July will be seen as 2012’s slowest month with but two further offerings of note. “The Amazing Spiderman” is first up starring Andrew Garfield in an all-new web adventure. The promo clips look amazing (excuse the pun)! Seth McFarlane of Family Guy fame launches his live-action feature debut with”Ted”. Starting off, a child’s wish comes true and his teddy bear springs to life. The plot shifts swiftly to the pair as adults. Stars Mark Wahlberg and Mila Kunis.
August releases include the second installment of “G.I. Joe”, titled “G.I. Joe: Retaliation”. Channing Tatum’s U.S. military hero (Joe) is joined by Dwayne (The Rock) Johnson and Bruce Willis. This time Joe tackles master-of-disguise, Zartan. Look out for Jonathon Levine staring in the zombie love story “Warm Bodies”. Highly anticipated Bourne No.4, “The Bourne Legacy” also launches in August. Jeremy Renner takes over form Matt Damon with support from Edward Norton and Rachel Weisz.
There’s been a lot of talk about the remake of “Total Recall”. This time around Colin Farrell plays hero Quaid. Early reports suggest a different take on the Verhoeven original. The second installment of “The Expendables” (No.2) sees the entire cast return including Sly Stallone, Arnold Schwarzenegger, Bruce Willis, Jet Li, Dolph Lundgren and Jason Statham. Chuck Norris joins in for a little additional star power. Final turnout for August is supernatural thriller “Sinister”, starring Ethan Hawke.
“Premium Rush”kicks off September’s action with Joseph Gordon-Levitt playing a bicycle courier on the run form a corrupt cop. More 3D action follows with CG animation “Hotel Transylvania”. Adam Sandler’s Dracula is annoyed by his daughters (Mylie Cyris) choice to hook up with a human. Final mention for September is “Savages”, an Oliver Stone feature starring Aaron Johnson and Taylor Kitsch. A couple of pot growers tackle a Mexican cartel. Also stars Benicio Del Toro, John Travolter and Uma Thurman.
First up for October is part 2 of “Taken”. Liam Neeson features again as ex-CIA operative Bryan Mills. In this turn Mills ends up the target of the father of one of his prior victims. “Resident Evil 5” continues the zombie video game franchise. Milla Jovovich and Michelle Rodriguez star. “Argo”, directed by Ben Affleck and produced by George Clooney tells the true-life story of a CIA extraction of hostages from Iran during the 1979 crisis.
Ryan Gosling and Sean Penn team up for “Gangster Squad” it’s set for release in early November. Final installment of the teen vampire franchise “Twilight” screens in mid November. “Breaking Dawn – Part 2” will provide closure to the story for hundreds of thousands of teens. In “47 Ronin” Keeanu Reeves leads a band of warriors seeking revenge after the slaying of their master.
Another 3D, CGI feature, “Life of Pie” tells the tale of a boy trapped on a lifeboat with a Zebra, Tiger, Hyena and Orangutan. This adaption of Yann Martel’s book is due for school holiday release a week before Christmas. An ensemble cast including Hugh Jackman, Russell Crow, Anne Hathaway and Helena Bonham Carter star in Victor Hugo’s “Les Miserables” due out on Boxing Day.
Final release of 2012 is the long-awaited adaption of Tolkein’s “The Hobbit”. Peter Jackson returns to Middle Earth to direct with Martin Freeman playing hobbit hero Bilbo.
If nothing else comes of 2012 we will certainly be able to look back on this particular year as a ‘year of great movie releases’. Cinema fans will want to start making provision now if they are to see their complete list of favorites in the largest of formats. Maybe it’s time to drop in at the bank and open that ‘cinema savings account’ today.